A Rosewood High School graduate has been accepted to three prestigious military schools, setting his sights on the U.S. Air Force Academy.
Caden Reiss just received his high school diploma a week ago. He will report to the academy in Colorado Springs, Colorado, in less than two weeks.
Officials said he had also received appointments to the U.S. Naval Academy and the U.S. Military Academy, also known as West Point.
By choosing the Air Force Academy, his parents, Jason and Heather Reiss, will have two sons continuing their education at the academy at the same time.
His brother, Evan, received his appointment to the Air Force Academy in 2015.
Caden called the appointment an honor and said he was looking forward to beginning his journey at the academy.
"Being accepted into the Air Force Academy means the beginning of an arduous journey, ultimately leading to a career serving the nation as an Air Force officer," he said. "Myself and fellow cadets will complete four years of academic, military, and physical training, imparting us with the qualities necessary to serve in this capacity."
At least five years of military service are required of each graduate, he said.
It is a highly competitive process, with appointments awarded to approximately 1,200 out of more than 9,000 applicants each year.
"Being awarded an appointment to the United States Air Force Academy is a prestigious honor," said superintendent of Wayne County Public Schools Dr. Michael Dunsmore. "In addition to receiving a congressional nomination, Mr. Reiss had to demonstrate to academy officials that he had the necessary qualities to be a successful cadet through his academic performance, personal accomplishments, and athletic ability.
"This is an outstanding opportunity, and we wish Mr. Reiss the very best in his academic and military aspirations."
During his high school career, Reiss served as vice president of the school's National Honor Society and was on the track and tennis teams. He also competed in a year-round gymnastics program and was a North Carolina Men's State Champion through USA Gymnastics in 2014.
He was also active in community outreach and service programs, officials said, in such areas as helping Protestant Preschool collect and distribute clothes, food and other items in the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew in 2016.